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People are advised to stay indoors because of the poor air quality

People are advised to stay indoors because of the poor air quality

YAKIMA, Wash. - Labor Day is here and many people are trying to enjoy the outdoors with their families but the air quality in Yakima is only getting worse.

The air quality was in the hazardous range earlier today. That is the worst it can get.

The air quality now has improved by a little, it is now in the very unhealthy range but people are still being warned to stay indoors if possible.

Steven Housner came all the way from Portland to spend Labor Day weekend with his family and he says the smoky air will not stop him from enjoying this weekend.

“Because the grandkids wanted to its an annual thing we do every year and the soccer team over at the park there yesterday was extremely bad in the park but we were there for about 5 hours and it hadn’t cleared up a whole lot,” said Housner.

The Kittitas County Public Health Department says the smoke is from both the Jolly Mountain Fire in Kittitas County and the Norse Peak Fire near Naches.

Housner says that although he is spending his weekend outdoors, the air has been affecting him.

“Well you start feeling dry in your throat is kind of scratchy so you have to drink something you know when your eyes my eyes bothered me a little bit I had to drop my eyes a couple of times,” said Housner.

The smoky conditions are expected to continue throughout the week so people are urged to take necessary steps to avoid negative health effects.

“You can have mild symptoms like headache, watery eyes, feel a little short of breath all the way up to big exacerbation of a chronic condition like asthma or something like that,” said Emergency Department Nurse Manager at Virginia Mason Memorial, Kimberly Bersing.

The Kittitas County Public Health Department wants people to stay indoors and take the following steps:

Keep windows and doors closed

Don’t use candles, fireplaces or gas stoves

Don’t vacuum or smoke

If you can’t keep your doors and windows closed because of no air conditioner, then consider leaving the area.

The air quality recommendations apply to everyone when the air is in the unhealthy, very unhealthy or hazardous range, but it is especially important for people with health conditions, children, elderly and pregnant women.

Now if you must step outside people are recommended to wear N95 masks. You can get these at any Walmart or Home Depot.

Anyone experiencing any trouble breathing should contact their doctor or call 911 as soon as possible.

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